This Quick Beef Stew is exactly what you need after a long and busy day. It’s such an easy recipe to make and it’s filled with hearty ingredients to keep you going! It has lean ground beef, a rich broth gravy, and lots of healthy vegetables. It’s only 366 calories per serving and is ready in just 45 minutes, making it a perfect kid-friendly weeknight dinner. And it’s naturally gluten free!

Blue bowl filled with fresh beef and vegetable stew sitting on a hessian placemat on a table with a silver spoon in front of it.

Why We Love Quick Stovetop Beef Stew

Stovetop Quick Beef Stew is one of the most comforting dishes there is and this recipe makes it in under 1 hour, so you don’t need to wait around all day. The short cooking time makes it a great choice for your weeknight dinner but also a good option for a hearty lunch!

This dish is so versatile and customizable, packed with lots of vegetables, it’s a great dish to use up any vegetable produce you have leftover from the week. It’s gluten free, kid friendly, and freezes well too. Another of my favorite quick dishes to add veggies to for the kids is my Healthy Skillet Shepherds Pie.

You don’t have to be a culinary wizard to be able to pull off making beef stew in only 45 minutes, this recipe is so easy to make. I’m going to let you in on my secret to getting slow-simmered flavor and tender beef in under an hour!

Key Ingredients For This Ground Beef Stew Recipe

Ground Beef

I tend to use grass-fed organic ground beef, preferably 92% lean, from a local source. It is a more sustainable choice than corn-fed and finished beef and has a lower carbon footprint.

Vegetables

Potatoes (Yukon gold or red potatoes), carrots, celery, parsnips. Any root vegetable is good in this broth, and you can use all sorts of other vegetables too like green beans or sweetcorn.

Beef broth or stock

I always use a low-sodium broth. You can also use chicken broth, vegetable broth or even water in a pinch. If you use water, be sure to add extra salt at the end. 

Dry Red Wine

Using dry red wine gives a depth of flavor to beef broth that is quite unique. If you don’t want to cook with alcohol, you can leave it out or replace it with the same amount in extra beef broth.

Thyme

Thyme compliments beef so well in this stew, with earthy and slightly floral hints to it. You can also use basil, marjoram or oregano if you don’t have thyme.

Spices: Paprika, red chili flakes

I love a bit of heat in my meals, so a blend of hot and mild paprika and red chili flakes is my go-to for this recipe. My kids prefer just mild paprika though, so keep these things in mind when choosing your spices.

Garlic and onion

Sautéd garlic and onion add great flavor to almost any meal, but they are very complimentary with beef and vegetables.

Other Ingredients

Salt is used for seasoning throughout cooking, while cornstarch will thicken the stew gravy (arrowroot starch can also be used). Worcestershire sauce adds a salty, sour, and umami flavor which makes the stew richer. For cooking oil, avocado oil or organic canola oil is good. Fresh parsley is great to add before serving the stew, though fresh cilantro will work too.

Blue bowl filled with beef stew, with a silver spoon in it, sitting on a hessian placemat on a wooden table.

How to make Quick Beef Stew in under 45 minutes

Step One: Brown the ground beef and set aside

Heat 1 tablespoon oil in the bottom of a large heavy bottom soup pot over high heat. Add beef, and cook, stirring occasionally and crumbling the meat with a wooden spoon until it is no longer pink, 7 to 9 minutes. Remove the meat to a bowl, along with any juices from the pot, and cover with foil.

Step Two: Saute garlic and onion, add seasoning and wine

Return the pot to the stove and reduce heat to medium. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon oil to the pot. Add garlic and onion, and cook stirring until the onion starts to brown in spots, 3 to 5 minutes. Sprinkle with paprika, salt, thyme and red pepper flake if using, and cook, stirring until the spices are fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add wine, increase heat to high and cook, stirring until the wine has almost evaporated, 2 to 3 minutes.

Step Three: Add broth and vegetables and simmer

Add 3 ½ cups broth, potatoes, carrots, celery, parsnips and Worcestershire and stir well. Bring to a simmer, stirring occasionally.

Step Four: Add broth with cornstarch, add beef and simmer

Reduce heat to medium to maintain a simmer, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are just tender, 15 to 18 minutes. Stir the remaining ½ cup broth with cornstarch, and stir into the simmering stew. Increase heat to high and bring to a simmer, stirring. Stir in the beef and return to a simmer. Remove stew from the heat and ladle into bowls. Top with parsley.

FAQs and Expert Tips For This Reicpe

How can I speed up beef stew?

While you brown the meat in step 1, bring the 3 ½ cups broth used in step 3 to a simmer in a separate pot or in the microwave. Once it is added to the pot in step 3, the whole stew will come to a simmer more quickly, shaving 7 minutes off your total time. Just make sure not to pre-heat the ½ cup that’s mixed with the cornstarch in step 4.

How do you make stew meat tender on the stove?

The trick to tender stew meat is to not cook it for too long. If stew meat is cooked for too long it will lose its moisture and become tough. As this recipe only takes 45 minutes you are sure to have tender meat in your stew!

Should you brown meat for stew?

Absolutely. Browning the meat gives you something called “fond” which enriches the stew considerably. Fond is a French culinary word for the tasty caramelized bits on the bottom of the pan when food is browned. Fond is very flavorful, creating and capturing it is the difference between a bland and rich flavored dish. To get good fond you need heat, oil, and as little moisture as possible. In this recipe we do this by heating oil on high heat and then browning the ground beef. The wider your soup pot, the more fond you’ll get. After the meat has browned take it out, and you’ll see the tasty caramelized bits of fond on the bottom and along the sides of the pot.

Can I make this stew ahead of time?

This beef stew is perfect for making ahead as it is great for freezing! Make a double batch and store it in the fridge or freezer in portions for later.

How do I store quick beef stew?

Store in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 5 days. You can freeze in an airtight container or freezer bag for up to 6 months!

What To Serve With This Quick Beef Stew

  • My classic Garden Salad would be a nice compliment to this comfort food meal.
  • Warm up some bread or your favorite from a local bakery.
  • You could also serve with crackers too!
  • I have been enjoying playing around with the Air Fryer lately and recently made these Cheddar Biscuits for my client Cabot. They would be great with this stew! 

More Weeknight Recipes and Stew Recipes

You can also check out my recipe on  A Dish of Daily Life!

Blue bowl filled with quick beef stew, with a silver spoon in it, sitting on a hessian placemat on a wooden table.

Thanks so much for reading. If you are new here, you may want to sign up for my free weekly email newsletter where I share weeknight meal plans delivered right to your inbox. Or follow me on Instagram. If you make this recipe, please come back and leave a star rating and review! It is very appreciated. Happy Cooking! ~Katie

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Beef stew with ground beef and lots of vegetables in a bowl on a table

Quick Beef Stew

  • Author: Katie Webster
  • Prep Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x
  • Category: Soup
  • Cuisine: American

Description

Don’t miss this easy Quick Beef Stew recipe that will tickle your taste buds. It is chock-full of lean ground beef and vegetables and is ready in just 45 minutes making it a perfect kid friendly weeknight dinner. And it’s gluten free!


Scale

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons avocado oil or organic canola oil, divided
  • 1 pound lean ground beef, preferably 92% lean
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1 ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon dry thyme
  • pinch red chili flake, optional
  • ½ cup dry red wine
  • 4-cup box beef broth or stock, divided *see note
  • 2 medium Yukon gold or red potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 2 carrots diced,
  • 2 stalks celery diced
  • 1 cup peeled and diced parsnips
  • 1 ½ teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • chopped parsley for garnish

Instructions

  1. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in the bottom of a large heavy bottom soup pot over high heat. Add beef, and cook, stirring occasionally and crumbling the meat with a wooden spoon until it is no longer pink, 7 to 9 minutes. Remove the meat to a bowl, along with any juices from the pot, and cover with foil.
  2. Return the pot to the stove and reduce heat to medium. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon oil to the pot. Add garlic and onion, and cook stirring until the onion starts to brown in spots, 3 to 5 minutes. Sprinkle with paprika, salt, thyme and red pepper flake if using, and cook, stirring until the spices are fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add wine, increase heat to high and cook, stirring until the wine has almost evaporated, 2 to 3 minutes.
  3. Add 3 ½ cups broth, potatoes, carrots, celery, parsnips and Worcestershire and stir well. Bring to a simmer, stirring occasionally.
  4. Reduce heat to medium to maintain a simmer, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are just tender, 15 to 18 minutes. Stir the remaining ½ cup broth with cornstarch, and stir into the simmering stew. Increase heat to high and bring to a simmer, stirring. Stir in the beef and return to a simmer. Remove stew from the heat and ladle into bowls. Top with parsley.

Notes

  • To speed this recipe up even more. While you brown the meat in step 1, bring the 3 ½ cups broth used in step 3 to a simmer in a separate pot or in the microwave. Once it is added to the pot in step 3, the whole stew will come to a simmer more quickly, shaving 7 minutes off your total time. Just make sure not to pre-heat the ½ cup that’s mixed with the cornstarch in step 4.
  • Take time to brown the garlic and onions in oil, reducing the heat to medium. This way the onions will cook more slowly and release their liquid, deglazing the fond a bit.
  • Make it healthier by adding more vegetables.
  • If you prefer not to cook with alcohol you can skip the wine altogether, or substitute it for non-alcoholic wine, more broth, or grape juice. 

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 2 cups
  • Calories: 366
  • Carbohydrates: 35 g
  • Fiber: 5 g
  • Protein: 28 g
A bowl of quick beef stew